Financial Markets, Money and the Real World
Show Less

Financial Markets, Money and the Real World

Paul Davidson

Paul Davidson investigates why the 1990s was a decade of financial crises that almost precipitated a global market crash. He explores the reasons why the global economy still struggles with the aftermath of these crises and discusses the possibility that volatile financial markets in the future will have real impacts on whole industries and national economic systems.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 12: Exchange Rates and the Tobin Tax

Paul Davidson


Eichengreen, Tobin and Wyplosz have argued that volatility in foreign exchange markets due to speculation can have ‘real economic consequences devastating for particular sectors and whole economies’.1 To constrain speculative behavior in exchange rate markets, Eichengreen et al. propose a very small tax on all foreign exchange transactions. At the same time that this proposal appeared in print in the winter of 1994–95, the Mexican peso crisis spilled over into the dollar problem. In international financial markets where image is often more important than reality, the dollar was initially dragged down by the peso while the German mark and Japanese yen appeared to be the only safe harbors for portfolio fund managers. Only after the Clinton administration bailed out the Mexican peso by providing a long-term dollar loan did the dollar recover on international foreign exchange markets. In April 1995, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan testified before Congress that ‘Mexico became the first casualty . . . of the new international financial system’ where electronic global communication permits hot portfolio money to slosh around the world ‘much more quickly’. Keynes had likened the battle of wits among portfolio fund managers to find financial assets whose price would rise, to a beauty contest where [I]t is not a case of choosing those which, to the best of one’s judgement are really the prettiest, nor even those which average opinion genuinely think the prettiest. We have reached the third degree where we devote our intelligence to anticipating what average opinion expects average...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.